Associate Justice Antonin Scalia, likely the most-conservative on the Supreme Court, was forced to defend his opinion — on marriage, equality, and anti-gay bigotry, and his comparison of anti-sodomy laws with laws banning bestiality, and murderÂ — to a college freshman while delivering a lecture at Princeton University yesterday afternoon.
â€In your dissent in Lawrence v. Texas, you equated laws against gay sex to laws against bestiality,” Duncan Hosie said to Justice Scalia, before the 76-year old jurist interrupted the freshman.
“I don’t think it’s necessary, but I think it’s effective,” Scalia responded, suggesting that legislative bodies can ban what they believe to be immoral, according to a report by the AP:
“It’s a form of argument that I thought you would have known, which is called the ‘reduction to the absurd,'” Scalia told freshman Duncan Hosie of San Francisco during the question-and-answer period. “If we cannot have moral feelings against homosexuality, can we have it against murder? Can we have it against other things?”
Scalia said he is not equating sodomy with murder but drawing a parallel between the bans on both.
Then he deadpanned: “I’m surprised you aren’t persuaded.”
Hosie said afterward that he was not persuaded by Scalia’s answer. He said he believes Scalia’s writings tend to “dehumanize” gays.
Hosie told The New Civil Rights Movement via email Scalia “interrupted me in the middle so I didn’t get to ask it in its entirety,” and provided the full text of his question:
In your dissent in Lawrence v. Texas, you equated laws against gay sex to laws against bestiality.
You wrote, “The Texas statute undeniably seeks to further the belief of its citizens that certain forms of sexual behavior are â€œimmoral and unacceptable,â€, the same interest furthered by criminal laws against fornication, bigamy, adultery, adult incest, bestiality, and obscenity.”
Justice Scalia, Iâ€™m gay, and as somebody who is gay I find these comparisons extraordinarily offensive. I think there is an fundamental difference between arguing the constitution does not protect gay sex, which is a defensible and legitimate legal position I disagree with, and comparing gays to people who commit murder or engage in bestiality. Do you have any regret or shame for drawing these comparisons you did in your dissents?
Scalia has been traveling the country promoting his book,Â Reading Law: The Interpretation of Legal Texts.Â
It is widely expected, given Scalia’s comments, and the fact he is a constitutional “originalist” or “textualist,” believing only in the exact meaning of the Constitution when and as it was written, that he will decide against marriage equality advocates when the court hears the Prop 8 and DOMA cases next year.
At least one person is asking a relevant question, given the fact the court just accepted two marriage cases. Karoli, a progressive writer, tweets:
â€” Karoli (@Karoli) December 11, 2012
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Acting Speaker McHenry Did Not Have Authority to Evict Pelosi Says Top Rules Committee Democrat
U.S. Rep. Patrick McHenry (R-NC), Kevin McCarthy’s hand-picked temporary successor and acting Speaker, operated outside of carefully crafted House rules when he evicted Speaker Emerita Nancy Pelosi and U.S. Rep. Steny Hoyer, the former Democratic Majority Leader, from their Capitol Hill offices just hours after Republicans ousted McCarthy as Speaker.
That’s according to the top Democrat on the powerful House Rules Committee, Ranking Member Jim McGovern (D-MA), who previously served as the Chair of the Rules Committee. He says the “Speaker pro tempore” has one job only: help elect a new Speaker of the House.
“I want to clear up some confusion,” McGovern wrote late Wednesday afternoon.
“As an unelected acting Speaker pro tempore, @PatrickMcHenry’s job is to guide the House toward the election of a new Speaker. That’s it.”
“His power is constrained by the plain text of Rule 1, Clause 8 of the Rules of the House,” said McGovern.
Rep. McGovern said he is “alarmed” by McHenry’s order evicting Pelosi and Hoyer.
“Given the plain text of the rule, I don’t think he has that power,” McGovern added.
McGovern further explained, “The rule says he can only exercise as much authority as is ‘necessary and appropriate’ towards the end of electing a Speaker. The Rules Committee narrowly described this rule in 2004: an acting Speaker pro tempore serves ‘for the sole purpose of electing a new Speaker.'”
“These rules were put into place after 9/11 to ensure continuity of government & quick election of a new Speaker in an emergency. Not to provide for a short-term Speaker due to Republican dysfunction,” concluded McGovern, who has served in Congress since 1997.
‘My Job Is Not to Put Pool Noodles Around Hard Corners for Republicans’: AOC Blasts Critics Over McCarthy Vote
U.S. Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY) blasted critics across the political spectrum who are angered House Democrats did not vote to keep Kevin McCarthy as Speaker, after Republicans ousted him on Tuesday.
“Contrary to how McCarthy’s defenders are behaving, men failing up is not a Constitutionally protected right,” Ocasio-Cortez said on social media. “The man made risky decisions and faced the natural consequences of them. I am not his mom, and my job is not to put pool noodles around hard corners for Republicans.”
AOC also blasted 2020 Democratic presidential candidate Andrew Yang, who is now a former Democrat, after he criticized Democrats on CNN.
“Why did Dems vote along party lines to oust Kevin McCarthy? Not because they thought it was good for the country but because that’s what they were told to do,” Yang said on social media when posting his remarks.
“Yes,” Congresswoman Ocasio-Cortez responded, “because strengthening someone who voted to overturn the election, held the entire US economy hostage, launched a baseless impeachment inquiry without a vote, and refuses to honor his word is what is in the best interest of this country.”
“Do some of you hear yourselves?” she asked rhetorically.
Tuesday night she also defended Democrats for not, as some have put it, “saving” McCarthy.
“Does anyone believe for one minute that McCarthy would help elect a Dem speaker ‘for the institution’?” she asked. “McCarthy’s hubris is a theme. He loudly stated he wouldn’t negotiate w/Dems, called virtually none, trashed those who helped w/CR, and then expected Dem votes for free?”
Karine Jean-Pierre Schools Peter Doocy for Asking if White House Is ‘Loving’ GOP House Chaos
In the middle of an interview with U.S Senator John Kennedy, Fox News interrupted the Louisiana Republican for some “breaking news,” as the right wing cable network’s Peter Doocy began to ask White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre about the chaos far-right wing Republicans caused by ousting Speaker of the House Kevin McCarthy on Tuesday.
“All right. Senator, thank you for joining us. We got a little bit of breaking news here. We got to jump back to the briefing. Our Peter Doocy is questioning the Press Secretary,” John Roberts told viewers as the camera cut to the White House Press Briefing Room.
“Is any part of the West Wing here, just loving the fact that Republicans don’t appear to be able to govern the one part of the government that they actually control?” Doocy asked.
“Nobody’s ‘loving’ anything when it’s when we’re not when we’re not able to deliver for the American people. Nobody’s loving that,” Jean-Pierre replied, as she explained to Doocy what the White House believes is actually important.
“It is important for Congress to work, not for us, but on behalf of the American people. It is important to make sure that we meet the challenges of the American people. That’s what’s important. What we saw, you heard from the President, what we saw on Saturday should have never have happened, but we’re glad that a deal was made. We’re glad that we’re not in a shutdown. But House Republicans should have never gotten us that far.”
Jean-Pierre went on to tell Doocy that since Republicans “are the majority in the House, they can fix this.”
“They’re creating the chaos. That is not helpful to the American people.”
“That’s why you saw the President today talk about student debt relief, and talk about what else he’s doing to make sure that we’re giving a little bit of breathing room to the American people. That’s why you heard from the President yesterday talking about or our announcement, talking about how we’re continuing to beat Big Pharma so we can lower prescription drug costs for the American people. That’s what the President cares about. That’s what he wants to see – what can we continue to do to help Americans as they face really tough challenges? So this is not, we’re not loving it. It is not helpful to any any American across the country.”
Doocy, went on to ask if “anybody in the West Wing has heard anybody talking about the possibility of ‘Speaker Trump.'”
Watch below or at this link.
Fox News cuts off interview with senator for “breaking news,” which is Peter Doocy asking KJP the following questions:
– is the West Wing “loving the fact” that the GOP doesn’t appear able to govern the House?
– are you guys talking about a possible Speaker Trump? pic.twitter.com/Csr2E2CYI5
— Justin Baragona (@justinbaragona) October 4, 2023
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